Seahawks select UCF LB Shaquem Griffin in the 5th round
Central Florida linebacker Shaquem Griffin may have been joking when he called for a “Legion of Griffins” in Seattle, but the reunion between Griffin and his twin brother Shaquill became a reality when the Seahawks selected Shaquem in the fifth round of the NFL draft Saturday.
Griffin, 22, attended the first two days of the draft, but was with his family for the third day when he got the call from Seahawks general manager John Schneider. Griffin told reporters he was distracted and might have missed the call, but was – thankfully – stopped by his brother, who recognized the area code.
“I was (heading to) the restroom and my brother came and tackled me with my cell phone and said, ‘Answer it, answer it!’ And I looked and that’s when tears started pouring down right then and there,” Griffin said, laughing. “That’s exactly how it happened.”
The Griffin twins and their family returned to the draft site in Dallas and took the stage Saturday afternoon.
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Griffin impressed scouts not just with his 2017 performance and blazing 40-yard dash, but also with his ability to do it all with one hand. Griffin’s left hand was amputated when he was four years old as a result of amniotic band syndrome. The selection gives the Seahawks both twins as they took cornerback Shaquill last year.
“Everybody thinks it’s a sentimental story, but Shaquem Griffin doesn’t see it like that,” Griffin said. “I’m a guy who’s going to be able to come in, I’m going to work my butt off, I’m going to learn as fast as possible, and I’m going to contribute the best way possible. If you want me to rush, I will rush and I’ll give you everything I got. If you want me to cover, I will cover and I’m going to give you everything I got. Nothing will change about me. I am a football player at the end of the day, and people that feel sorry or have any pity on me, well then they’re going to be the ones who got to get up off their back.”
Griffin finished his last year at UCF with 74 combined tackles, seven sacks, and one interception. He finished his college career with 195 total tackles, 18.5 sacks, three interceptions and one touchdown.